Very few people find learning a language to be an easy endeavour. It takes months of hard work and there will be setbacks along the way. In this blog post, one of our French language trainers Amandine looks at a few tips on how to learn a language that should help you to progress a little more than you otherwise would have done.
1. Take a language course
It has to be the top tip, of course. It is difficult to learn anything by yourself, but the structure and focus that a regular language class offers you is something that is essential to good language retention. Ideally, it would be in a one to one environment, but if that is not feasible then take some group classes. Make sure that you attend each one as it is easy to just stay at home if it's raining and not bother going.
2. Learn something each day
We know of two very well-known individuals who take 15-20 minutes of their day to practise their piano skills. I am sure that you are as busy , but if a politician and a newspaper editor can do it then so can you. Learn a phrase or some vocabulary every day. People tend to have a base of around 800-1000 words, so it will not take long for you to develop a good range of vocabulary.
3. Use media
By this, I mean old and new media. There was a great example recently of Brazilian schoolchildren correcting celebrities' use of grammar on Twitter, so why not do the same? You should also try and read a newspaper in the language that you are learning as often as you can, as well as watch as many films and tv shows as possible (with or without subtitles). Remember that it is a good way to consolidate your skills but is not a replacement for more direct learning.
4. Get a friend
I am sure you have at least a few friends, but you can never have enough! Get some friends who are native speakers in the language that you are learning. Be careful with getting them to correct your grammar too often, but try and speak with them in their language. They can also get to try and communicate in your language with you.
We all make mistakes, and probably one of the biggest issues holding students back is the fear of making errors. It can be tough walking into a bar in Spain and trying to converse in your new Spanish with some natives nearby, but it is the only way that you will be able to communicate and that is, after all, what you are trying to do.
You can learn a range of foreign languages with Unique Language Training. Please contact us on 020 3566 0145, by e-mail or by filling out the form on this page.